Fiction Friday "Fishing"

I want to thank Patty (more affectionately known as Peej) for letting me host Friday Fiction today. If you would like to join us, add your name at the bottom in Mr. Linky.

Here are a few excerpts from my novel "A Home for Phoebe".

The Twig Trap

Holding up the woven platform, Maseppa said, “This be good. I think it good to catch fish. Maybe I catch plenty to trade.”

She stood and strode toward the stream. Phoebe hurried to see what she was doing.

Following the water upstream until she found a pool, Maseppa placed some stones in a row, she formed a wall with only one opening, creating a swift current. Beneath this fountain, Maseppa secured her twig net among other rocks. Immediately it caught leaves and sticks in the rushing stream.

Maseppa sat and waited.

Phoebe came close and sat with her. Together they watched and waited. Soon a fish slipped through the gate and flopped on the net, not able to swim farther. Maseppa quickly snatched it up with a smile.

“It work good!”

They sat and watched the net for a long time. By noon, they had a dozen fish.

“I’m hungry,” Phoebe complained.

“I cook some for us and others we dry.”

Maseppa took the net from the water and hung it on a nearby tree. Carrying their catch on a stick, they returned along the footworn path.

"Fishing in the Creek"

Phoebe’s favorite spot was near the Stein Kill Creek. The brook tumbled and bubbled from one little pool to another amid ferns and pink wild roses. Hours flew by as she and Butch hopped from rock to rock or chased minnows in the shady pools.

Butch plunged after a fish and then looked around in surprise that it had disappeared. After a few attempts, he came over to Phoebe, shook, and looked up to her as if to say, “OK, it’s your turn. I give up.”

Phoebe made a twig trap, to catch the fish swimming down-stream, but one big, old trout seemed content to hide under the shade of the overhanging branches. She had seen Maseppa spear a fish before and decided to try her hand at it. Finding a sturdy branch, she whittled a barb on the end with a little knife she had traded for a willow basket. That knife was handy for digging roots, stripping bark, and all kinds of uses.

Tucking up her skirt between her legs and standing knee deep in the cool stream, Phoebe slowly approached the dark water. Spying the fish lurking near the bank, she raised her arm and waited for it to move closer. Butch stood on the bank, silently peering over its edge. Phoebe’s legs grew numb in the cold water, but finally the black shadow swam nearer.

With a splash and a gasp, Phoebe thrust the stick downward and then pulled it back quickly to find… nothing! She was sure she hit it, but now it was gone!

Butch barked as if to say, “It’s not as easy as it looks.”

"Fishing on Kinderhook Pond"

When they returned to the pond, they dangled the shiny metal fishhooks, baited with wiggling crickets into the dark water. Phoebe leaned over the edge of the rowboat waiting and watching for some fish. She’d pull her string up every few minutes to see if the cricket was still there.

“I don’t think fish like crickets,” decided Phoebe.

“You need to be like water and wind and grass to catch animals. If you be like man, they not come.”

Phoebe leaned her chin on her arm on the edge of the boat. She closed her eyes. The warm sun felt good on her back. It shimmered on the water. Today is like a shiny brass bead. She closed eyes. A little breeze picked up. Ripples slapped the hull and gently rocked them.

Suddenly, Phoebe’s line slid through her fingers. She clasped it tightly and pulled. Maseppa helped her pull it up, hand over hand. The white perch jumped as it reached the surface. Maseppa lifted the wriggling fish into the boat. Phoebe clapped with glee as it flopped about on the floor. They would have roasted fish for supper that night.

Don't forget to leave some nice comments!


Dee Yoder said...

What a character Phoebe is, and her pal, Maseppa, is the all-wise one! Great little peeks into your book, Vonnie.

Catrina Bradley... said...

I'm looking forward to the novel after reading these wonderful little fishing scenes! I like the trout-spearing scene best. There's just something about fishing on a lazy sunny day that seems so peaceful.

Hoomi said...

Interesting tidbits that leave the reader hungry for more. You've got me curious about the characters and the overall setting.

Sharlyn Guthrie said...

Great writing! I'm not into fishing, but I loved all your descriptions, and could especially feel that numbing cold water.

Patrick said...

Thank you for hosting Friday Fiction this week. My youngest son has repeatedly asked me to take him fishing. He and I are going camping this weekend and this timely reminder helped me to remember the fishing poles. I also need to remember to be like fish and not man...cuz I can't catch fish!

Patty Wysong said...

Mmmm. I like, Vonnie! Heartwarming!
Thanks for hosting for us!

Joanne Sher said...

Love the atmosphere of this, and, of course, the characters. Great stuff.

Karlene Jacobsen said...

Your writing is so smooth and captivating. This little apetizer has gotten my apetite whet for the whole meal.

LauraLee Shaw said...

This warmed my heart so much. VERY excited to see more!

Sherri Ward said...

This one makes me want to just be outside on a sunny day and just relax!


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